Tesla Motors has at least one Chinese businessman in its corner. Andrew Zong, CEO of heat-pump maker PHNIX, recently engaged in a bit of crowd-funding to establish a charging network for new owners of the Model S battery-electric sedan throughout at least part of the world's most populous nation. And it's good publicity, of course.

Zong hatched a plan to buy 20 electric-vehicle chargers from Tesla after picking up his new sedan in Beijing and realizing he'd have a hard time recharging in on the 1,300-mile drive south to Guangzhou. Zong then went onto online sites such as WeChat and Weibo and solicited volunteers to install his chargers. And after more than 3,000 miles worth of driving (or about a dozen or so odd recharging sessions), Zong got his 20 chargers installed. You can read PHNIX's press release below.

Zong's efforts are a far cry from those of fellow Chinese businessman Zhan Baosheng, who registered for the trademark on the Tesla name in the country in 2006. Zhan, who has long been scuffling with the California-based automaker, recently sued Tesla for trademark infringement and was seeking almost $4 million in damages. That would buy a lot of chargers.
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Crazy Charging Plans for Tesla

GUANGZHOU, China, July 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- "When I picked up my Tesla in Beijing, I realized that it's impossible to drive it back to Guangzhou as there are hardly any places to recharge the batteries," Andrew Zong, the CEO of PHNIX and also one of the first Chinese Tesla owners, said this to reporters.

As a result, Andrew Zong got a crazy plan that by utilizing the power of the Internet and folk strength, he could make the first charging facility network in China to solve the electric vehicles' charging problems.

With this plan, Andrew Zong bought a batch of original chargers for Tesla and promised that he would donate all the chargers to new-energy-loving car owners.

Next Andrew Zong posted on online social network platforms, like WeChat and Weibo, to recruit volunteers who were willing to provide installation sites and offer free charging service for Tesla motors. During the next three days, there were thousands of volunteers applying to install charging piles at their places. Taken everything into consideration, 20 of the volunteers were selected.

During the following twenty days, Andrew Zong and his companions have self-driven his Tesla for 5,750 kilometers via sixteen cities, in which they have donated twenty charging piles. To their astonishment, they finally succeeded in pioneering the first route of electric car charging network from north to south China.

Andrew Zong, the founder of the world's leading heat pumps manufactory and one of the craziest T-fans, has ordered 20 Tesla as rewards for employees and built 60 charging parking lots in his own factories.

Andrew Zong told reporters, "The true value of this action is to tell everyone: as long as more and more people are involved, a network of charging piles across China will soon be set up and this could form a more eco-friendly lifestyle for China."

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 1 Year Ago
      The guy with the Tesla trademark in China needs to get a life and realize that buying the name in China to extort the money from the company later on is pitiful. Truly American of him too.
      Jim McL
      • 1 Year Ago
      These cannot be super chargers.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Jim McL
        They are probably 220v garage hook-ups, nobody mentioned 440v Supercharging.
      • 1 Year Ago
      If these folks network and stay in contact , they could form their own private charging network !!!! :-D
      • 1 Year Ago
      There's 20 guys in China with excellent new 9kW plugs that they cannot afford the car to fit.
        Levine Levine
        • 1 Year Ago
        There's more millionaires in China than in USA. China's middle class is growing while America's is declining. Get with the times. Americans are the ones who are getting poorer.
      Levine Levine
      • 1 Year Ago
      The title of the story entices us to read about Zong, a Chinese businessman and owner of a Model S, constructing 20 Tesla chargers using his own business initiative. Zhan has nothing to do with building Tesla chargers in China. The journalist's bringing him into the story is an ugly hit-and-run offense as well as raining Zong's parade.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Levine Levine
        Good posts, I agree 1) Hate = click-bait 2) the 20 folks with the chargers will probably be future customers.
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